Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Second Thoughts

There are some one-time Trump supporters who have finally had enough.  Via the Toronto Star:

“He doesn’t act like a presidential candidate and some days he hardly acts like an adult,” said Nick Lucasti, 19, an engineering student in Indiana. “The constant name-calling and slander are not necessary.”

Lucasti had once liked Trump’s outspokenness and promise to improve border security. After the Republican convention a month ago, he decided he could no longer tolerate the businessman’s refusal to moderate his remarks or make his vague pledges more specific and realistic.

“For a while I thought he was very metaphorical — his ‘wall’ was really just a metaphor for him wanting to secure the borders,” said Lucasti, now undecided. “After months of watching him, though, I now know for sure that this guy honestly wants to build a concrete wall hundreds of miles long. Just ridiculous.”

It is impossible to know how many supporters have become defectors. Swing-state polls, though, show a decline in his share of the vote as Clinton’s has increased sharply. In must-win Pennsylvania, he has fallen from 44 per cent in July to 40 per cent today. In New Hampshire, he has gone from 42 per cent to 36 per cent.

“He has been crushed in the last couple weeks,” said Tim Malloy, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Poll. “He’s losing people from every possible demographic.”

And he is struggling with the right far more than Democratic nominee Clinton is struggling with the left. Clinton has the support of about 90 per cent of Democrats, Trump about 80 per cent of Republicans.

“A lot of the summer has not been used well,” said Lee Miringoff, director of the Marist Institute for Public Opinion.

The Star interviewed 10 people who have recently ditched Trump or wavered. They cited a wide variety of complaints: his vice-presidential choice of religious conservative Mike Pence, his insistence that Barack Obama is “the founder” of Daesh, also known as ISIS and ISIL, even his rejection of a debate with Bernie Sanders. By far the most common concern, though, was his behaviour.

“There was just something off about him,” said Alabama finance student Frank Smyser, 21, who ditched Trump a month ago in favour of Libertarian Gary Johnson.

Or, “it’s all fun and games until someone blows up a country.”

It was one thing to vote for Trump during the primary when you were picking for a candidate, but now when it means that the name on the ballot could be the one in the White House… wait, he said what?